Mekong Memo Laos 20230913
Mekong Memo Laos Weekly, September 13, 2023: Business, politics, finance, trade & legal news.
We monitor and filter the very best and most insightful stories from Southeast Asia directly to your inbox every week.
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With that said, here is your Mekong Memo Laos for the week of September 13, 2023:
Laos Assumes Symbolic ASEAN Chairmanship, Focuses on Connectivity and Resilience
Laos has symbolically taken over the chairmanship of ASEAN from Indonesia, with a focus on "Enhancing Connectivity and Resilience." Lao Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone pledged to build a more connected and resilient ASEAN, address geopolitical challenges, and expand external relations. The official handover will occur early next year, and Laos aims to continue Indonesia's achievements, promote carbon neutrality, and advance digital transformation in the region.
Read more: Laotian Times
Laos-Vietnam Relations Reach Historic Peak
Lao Minister of Planning and Investment Khamjane Vongphosy declares that Laos-Vietnam relations are at their best in history. The two nations have effectively implemented a 10-year cooperation strategy and a five-year cooperation agreement, contributing to political stability and socio-economic development in both countries. Vietnamese aid to Laos focuses on human resources and poverty reduction, while Vietnamese companies run over 400 investment projects in Laos. The countries are enhancing connectivity in trade, investment, and other sectors to expand regional cooperation. Further underscoring the deepening ties between the two nations, Deputy Foreign Minister Le Thi Thu Hang also had a meeting with Lao Foreign Minister Tinh Souksan in which they discussed enhancing cooperation, particularly in supporting overseas Vietnamese and Lao communities. The two countries aim to implement high-level agreements in various sectors, including education, tourism, and culture.
Mekong River Commission Releases 2022 Annual Report
The Mekong River Commission's 2022 Annual Report was released on Thursday, September 7, 2023 and outlines key achievements and challenges in the Mekong River Basin. Significant milestones include new guidelines for hydropower dam design, innovative flood and drought forecasting tools, and a Joint Study to understand changing water flow. The report also emphasizes the organization's alignment with 10 of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. Despite progress, challenges such as changing flow regimes, plastic pollution, and climate-exacerbated disasters persist, requiring continued transboundary cooperation.
Read more: Mekong River Commission